Crain’s Headlines: Lightfoot Floats New Chicago Casino Plan

Mayor Lori Lightfoot is floating a new plan to make the Chicago casino a property owned jointly by the city and the state. But the idea is getting a cool reception in Springfield.

Key lawmakers tell Crain’s the proposal faces an uphill fight to win passage in the General Assembly's fall veto session, as Lightfoot wants. Gov. J.B. Pritzker is not on board.

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Lightfoot’s proposal would create an independent commission, appointed by the mayor and the governor, to oversee the casino and divide the revenues between both governments.

But Springfield sources tell Crain’s the timing of a government casino ownership plan is problematic at best as prominent pols in the statehouse and Chicago City Hall face federal investigations.

In other Chicago business news:

Meanwhile, O’Hare Airport is feeling the impact of ongoing trade tensions between Washington and China.

U.S. and international carriers have cut flights from O'Hare to Beijing—as well as other Asian destinations such as Tokyo, Seoul and Hong Kong—by 19% compared to a year ago. Aviation industry insiders are concerned that this slowdown in international business travel might be an early warning sign that the longest economic expansion in American history is coming to an end.

And finally, real estate developer Related Midwest is adding a big office building and 75 more hotel rooms to its plan for a West Loop hotel and residential tower along the Kennedy Expressway.

The developer already has city approval for a 58-story skyscraper along Randolph Street between the highway and Halsted Street. But Related has now expanded its plan to include a full block south of the site, where it aims to erect an 18-story office building.

The revised plan would require city approval.

Crain’s Headlines is a joint production between WTTW and Crain’s Chicago Business. It airs every Monday through Thursday on the WTTW News program “Chicago Tonight.” 

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